On 11 February 2020, Freda Manweiler, Producer, Smashing Times is attending an International Partner Exchange in Valencia, Spain, for the European project Art, Fascism and Democracy. The project brings together artists and organisations from four different countries across Europe – Spain, Germany, Italy and Ireland – to work collaboratively on a European partner project Art, Fascism and Democracy: The Politics of Division versus the Politics of Inclusion, supported by Europe for Citizens.

The project uses theatre, film and new digital technologies to reflect on the ending of the Spanish Civil War, and to tell the stories of artists and activists who supported democracy and freedom and stood up against fascism in a time of war. The four European partners are IFESCOOP, Valencia, Spain; Smashing Times, Dublin, Ireland; University of Hannover, Germany; and Consorzio per la Formazione L’Innovazione E La Qualita, Pinerolo, Italy.

As part of this project Smashing Times will present a specially commissioned multi-disciplinary cabaret-style performance featuring exhilarating scenes of theatre, storytelling, poetry, music, song and dance, followed by panel discussion and debate, inspired by the stories of artists standing up to fascism during and after the Spanish Civil War and WWII. The performance takes place on the 16 and 17 October 2019 at the Samuel Beckett Theatre. A youth symposium takes place on the 16 October from 10am to 1pm, also at the Samuel Beckett Theatre, titled Politics of Division versus Politics of Inclusion – International Youth Arts Symposium.

An Art, Fascism and Democracy Book and Workshop are created and shared to reflect on the ending of the Spanish Civil War as a key turning point in European history. These will explore the effects of fascism on the lives of ordinary people, and what happens in society during and after civil war when totalitarianism and fascism takes over, and free speech, democratic processes and civil rights are denied. The aim is to promote a remembrance of a shared European history and to highlight contemporary democratic achievements in Europe today and the role European solidarity can play in promoting civil rights, democracy and peace.

For the Art, Fascism and Democracy web page, click here.